Sabah students learn about conservation through Honor outreach programme

KOTA KINABALU: Over 80 students and teachers underwent conservation awareness activities under the Honour Our Nature outreach programme (Honor).

The conservation outreach programme was organised by Danau Girang Field Centre (DGFC) and Sabah Wildlife Department (SWD) at Mahua Rainforest Paradise Crocker in Sabah's Tambunan district.

This four-day event was attended by over 80 students and teachers from 12 schools in four districts as well as the Wildlife Junior Rangers (WJR) from SM St Michael Sandakan.

“The students took part in many activities including forest walks and were taught about bird, insect, and plant identification.

"They were also given insights into the sleeping sites and diet of the pangolin," DGFC education officer Clarice Kelly Smith said.

She said the students were told of the exploitation of Sabah’s wildlife resources and efforts towards conservation and protection.

SWD's Siti Nurian Ampuan said that one of the purposes of the event was also to empower and recognise every participant as a certified Wildlife Junior Ranger (WJR).

"The junior rangers are designed to empower students with the knowledge and skills necessary for the conservation and protection of wildlife and the environment,” Nurain said.

“By participating in the WJR programme, students are not only trained to become ambassadors of environmental stewardship but also are equipped to spread the critical message to their peers, families, local communities, and beyond.

"This initiative aims to create a ripple effect, fostering a widespread culture of environmental awareness and responsibility across various community segments,” she added.

The students received their certificates for their commitment to the environment and aspiration to play a role as custodians of wildlife where Tambunan district officer Sobitun Makajil and other officials were present.

DGFC director Prof Benoit Goossens said the event underlines the importance of collaborative efforts and inspires youths to take up studies in science and ecology, nurturing the future leaders of conservation here in Sabah.

“Through the participation of the youths in Honor, we have seen the curiosity, passion, leadership, and creativity amongst them, and these give me great confidence that the future of wildlife conservation is in capable hands,” Goossens said.

The event was generously sponsored by the UK Orangutan Appeal and was conducted in partnership with the Sabah Education Department, Pangolin Aware, Sabah Parks and the Wildlife Rescue Unit.

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